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Mathematical biology and the existence of biological laws

Dorato, Mauro (2012) Mathematical biology and the existence of biological laws. [Published Article or Volume]


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An influential position in the philosophy of biology claims that there are no biological laws, since any apparently biological generalization is either too accidental, fact-like or contingent to be named a law, or is simply reducible to physical laws that regulate electrical and chemical interactions taking place between merely physical systems.
In the following I will stress a neglected aspect of the debate that emerges directly from the growing importance of mathematical models of biological phenomena. My main aim is to defend, as well as reinforce, the view that there are indeed laws also in biology, and that their difference in stability, contingency or resilience with respect to physical laws is one of degrees, and not of kind

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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Keywords: Laws, Mathematical biology, Contingency Dynamical systems, Reducibility
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Depositing User: Mauro Dorato
Date Deposited: 20 Mar 2012 20:58
Last Modified: 20 Mar 2012 20:58
Item ID: 9058
Journal or Publication Title: Probabilities, Laws and Structure
Publisher: Springer

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